An article by: Jeff Forrest – Tracy’s Brother
I could not be more proud and excited to announce the first recipients from the Tracy Forrest Scholarship Endowment (TFSE). As I mentioned in my previous emails, this charitable organization was formed shortly after my brother’s death in 2020 by his good friends Ed Turley, Cyrus Sigari, and Jon Callaghan. Through their efforts and those of the selection committee, and with the generous donations from those of you who contributed to the TFSE, the desire to help qualified students pursue their dreams of a career in aviation and space, has become a reality. The selection committee included Tracy’s good friends Stuart Fred, a Houston businessman and aviator, Bob Wilson, founder of Wilson Air, and three members of Embry-Riddle University.
McKenzey Piper Kimes – McKenzey is an Embry-Riddle student majoring in Aeronautical Science with a minor in Meteorology. She has been mesmerized by flying ever since she was little and decided to further her education at ERAU. She is obtaining her commercial license as of now and dreams of being a Captain for FedEx someday.
Nick Meconi – Nick is a college junior residing at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona. He is currently pursuing his commercial pilot ratings while studying full-time and working part-time to help alleviate costs. Nick is a lifetime scouter, and as a result, has a massive appreciation for the outdoors and practicing fun and unique skills. If he can't be outside camping, he prefers the sky-high view from his plane's window around our fun desert area. After completing his commercial airliner and search and rescue aspirations, he strives to eventually create a foundation for an airliner with a focus in sustainability and research into new technology.
Alexandra McGonagill - Alexandra is from Palm Harbor, FL and is characterized as hard-working, loyal, and very skilled at time management. She has always been able to manage rigorous academics while still attending numerous extracurricular activities and participating in volunteer services in her local community. Her family consists of herself, her mom, dad, her younger sister, Ashley, and their corgi Bella. Her dream is to fly for military airlines for ten years then fly rockets for the space force and travel to space. In college, she is a member of the Alpha Xi Delta sorority and works a part time job at a local restaurant.
Luca Anthony Vizzarri – Luca was born at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and is the son of a US Army Officer and Aviator father and Polish mother. Living life as an army brat, Luca traveled to Ft Hood, Texas, Germany, Italy, Peachtree City, Georgia and back to Texas totaling 9 moves when he finally settled in Oviedo, Florida. While at Oviedo High School, Luca played football and was a 4-year varsity wrestler serving as Captain during his junior and senior years. Part time he served as a lifeguard at the local aquatic center and is credited with 6 rescues. When the time came to decide on a college, Luca chose to follow in his father’s aviation footsteps, and become a commercial pilot. After a tour of ERAU campus and listening to the Acting Dean of Aviation, Dr Wiggins who said “You can go to a school that has Aviation or you can go to a school that is Aviation”, his decision was made and only applied to ERAU to major in Aeronautical Science.
He joined the Sigma Chi Fraternity in the spring of 2021 and is the current President of Recruiting. He has completed his private pilot’s license and instrument rating and is currently working on his commercial license. Like many Riddle students, he plans to fly for the airlines someday.
If you would like to learn more about the Tracy Forrest Scholarship Endowment or would like to contribute, I invite you to visit the TFSE website and discover how together we can make a difference to the lives of students that need financial assistance accomplishing their dream.
On behalf of Christine, Lou, Ed, Cyrus, Jon, Stuart, Bob, ERAU and myself, we thank you for keeping Tracy alive in the hearts of everyone he touched during his time on earth and in the sky.